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Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor; Dupois v Magistrate Previtera & Anor[2024] QCA 13

Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor; Dupois v Magistrate Previtera & Anor[2024] QCA 13

SUPREME COURT OF QUEENSLAND

CITATION:

Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor; Dupois v Magistrate Previtera & Anor [2024] QCA 13

PARTIES:

In Appeal No 4348 of 2023:

CHARLES DUPOIS

(appellant/respondent)

v

QUEENSLAND POLICE

(first respondent/first applicant)

MAGISTRATE STROFIELD

(second respondent/second applicant)

In Appeal No 5226 of 2023:

CHARLES DUPOIS

(appellant/respondent)

v

MAGISTRATE PREVITERA

(first respondent/first applicant)

QUEENSLAND POLICE

(second respondent/second applicant)

FILE NO/S:

Appeal No 4348 of 2023

Appeal No 5226 of 2023

SC No No 6119 of 2022

SC No 15528 of 2022

DIVISION:

Court of Appeal

PROCEEDING:

Applications to Strike Out

ORIGINATING COURT:

Supreme Court at Brisbane – Unreported, 27 March 2023 (Brown J); Supreme Court at Brisbane – [2023] QSC 82 (Crowley J)

DELIVERED ON:

12 February 2024

DELIVERED AT:

Brisbane

HEARING DATE:

28 November 2023

JUDGE:

Morrison JA

ORDERS:

  1. 1.Appeal 4348 of 2023 is dismissed with costs.
  2. 2.Appeal 5226 of 2023 is dismissed with costs.

CATCHWORDS:

APPEAL AND NEW TRIAL PROCEDURE QUEENSLAND  –  POWERS  OF  COURT  –  OTHER MATTERS where the appellant (Mr Dupois) instituted various proceedings in the Supreme Court, all of which were designed to prevent his committal for trial on a number of charges where the appellant’s central allegations, made in a variety of ways, are that the charges are corruptly brought, and corruptly maintained by numerous conspiracies involving officers of the Queensland Police Service, Magistrates, and judges of the Supreme Court where the appeal has no prospects and the respondents to it should not be vexed further by the appellant’s obstinate, misguided and defiant refusal to articulate a proper case or comply with the court’s directions as to the minimum required to assist the court or afford a fair hearing –where good reasons to take the latter course rather than let the appeals limp on include: (i) the serious defects in the formulation of the grounds; (ii) the refusal of the appellant to properly particularise or articulate his case (iii) the appellant’s contumelious conduct in refusing to comply with the court’s directions as to the preparation of the appeals; the unconscionable delay when seen in light of the refusal to prepare the cases; and (v) the outrageous nature of the allegations of corruption  – whether the appeals should be struck out or dismissed

Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (Qld), r 747, r 775

Arawak Holdings Pty Ltd & Ors v Jackson [2021] QCA 62, cited

Batistatos v Roads and Traffic Authority (NSW) (2006) 226 CLR 256, [2006] HCA 27, applied

Hunter v Chief Constable of the West Midlands Police [1982] AC 529; [1981] UKHL 13, cited

Muto v Faul [1980] VR 26; [1980] VicRp 3, applied

COUNSEL:

In Appeal No 4348 of 2023:

The appellant/respondent appeared on his own behalf

D D Keane KC for the first respondent/first applicant

P K O'Higgins for the second respondent/second applicant

In Appeal No 5226 of 2023:

The appellant/respondent appeared on his own behalf

P K O'Higgins for the first respondent/first applicant

D D Keane KC for the second respondent/second applicant

SOLICITORS:

In Appeal No 4348 of 2023:

The appellant/respondent appeared on his own behalf

QPS Legal Unit for the first respondent/first applicant

G R Cooper, Crown Solicitor for the second respondent/second applicant

In Appeal No 5226 of 2023:

The appellant/respondent appeared on his own behalf

G R Cooper, Crown Solicitor for the first respondent/first applicant

QPS Legal Unit for the second respondent/second applicant

  1. [1]
    MORRISON JA: The appellant, Mr Dupois,[1] has instituted various proceedings in the Supreme Court, all of which were designed to prevent his committal for trial on a number of charges brought on 18 May 2017:
    1. one offence of unlawful stalking, a domestic violence offence, between 14 September 2012 and 19 May 2017;
    2. one offence of using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence between 14 September 2012 and 19 October 2012;
    3. two offences of personation in general by falsely representing himself to be a person living/dead/real/fictitious from 23 October 2015 to 18 May 2017;
    4. one offence of forgery, on or about 6 February 2015; and
    5. two offences of uttering, on 6 February 2015 and 17 July 2015.
  1. [2]
    His central allegations, made in a variety of ways, are that the charges are corruptly brought, and corruptly maintained by numerous conspiracies involving officers of the Queensland Police Service, Magistrates, and judges of the Supreme Court.
  2. [3]
    Where rulings have been made against points raised by him, the appellant has instituted appeals to this Court. The present applications concern two such appeals.
  3. [4]
    The applicants have applied for orders in each appeal:
    1. dismissing the appeal for want of prosecution, pursuant to r 775 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (UCPR); or alternatively
    2. striking out the Notice of Appeal for breach of r 747(1)(b) UCPR; or alternatively
    3. striking out the Notice of Appeal pursuant to the inherent jurisdiction of the Court, as being scandalous and vexatious.
  1. [5]
    The current applications have to be assessed in the light of the fact that on 24 November 2022 the appellant was committed for trial, and the indictment was presented in the District Court on 22 May 2023.[2]

Appeal 4348/23

  1. [6]
    On 26 May 2022, the appellant commenced the primary proceedings by way of Originating Summons, alleging:[3]

“… this application being made by the Applicant is for a Permanent Stay of all of the charges that he currently faces in the Magistrates Court that he now brings to the attention of the Supreme Court are due to Judicial Misconduct/ Corruption and Police Corruption and that as a direct consequence of these matters there is no possible way that the Applicant would ever obtain a fair and impartial hearing as the proceedings in the Magistrates Court have already been determined before they have even begun.

The evidence supplied to this honourable court involving corruption cannot be disputed as its beyond reasonable doubt and once an impartial judicial officer has read and listened to the material / evidence in its entirety in my respectful submission there would be no other conclusion than for this court to come to than to establish that the proceedings in the Magistrate Court constitutes serious matters involving Judicial and Police Corruption.”

  1. [7]
    The relief sought included:
    1. a permanent stay the charges then the subject of a committal in the Magistrate’s Court;
    2. that the Magistrate’s Court trial date be vacated;
    3. that a particular Magistrate be recused “from any involvement of any sort in any matter involving me at any time”;
    4. that a “Police DVO Application which was dismissed by his Honour Judge Smith in 2018 … be dismissed”; and
    5. that the Supreme Court “make a recommendation to the appropriate legal authority that a criminal investigation involving Police and Judicial Corruption be independently investigated against” seven identified individuals including two Magistrates, the former head of the Crimes and Corruption Commission, two prosecutors, a Police Officer, and Mr Dupois’ ex-partner.
  1. [8]
    The Originating Application was set for trial, for three days commencing on 27 March 2023, before Brown J.
  2. [9]
    On 15 March 2023, the appellant sought an adjournment of the proceedings to permit several things to occur: (i) that nine more respondents be joined to the trial of the action; (ii) to permit him to proceed by way of claim and statement of claim; and (iii) to permit him to elect to have a trial by jury.
  1. [10]
    The application for an adjournment was refused. The appellant then sought a stay of that decision pending an appeal. That was refused by Brown J.
  2. [11]
    On 27 March 2023, the first day of the trial, the appellant sought a stay of the proceedings. As explained in her Honour’s reasons, the basis was that:[4]

“In Mr Dupois’ submission, the court should stay the proceedings because he seeks to have the Supreme Court, or members of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, and potentially the respondents to this matter, investigated by an external body because he believes that there is no impartial basis upon which a decision can be made by this court and that the decision not to permit the matter to proceed by way of judge and jury is a result of the courts and others intentionally making sure that the proceedings are never to take place before a judge and jury. Mr Dupois has indicated that he does not believe that his matter can be heard other than by trial of judge and jury and that he is not willing to have his proceeding heard on any other basis.”

  1. [12]
    The stay was refused.
  2. [13]
    The appellant then refused to proceed with the trial, because he wanted a jury trial and not a judge-only trial.
  3. [14]
    On 27 March 2023, Brown J made orders as follows:
    1. the stay of the trial was refused; and
    2. because the appellant adduced no evidence on the trial, the proceedings were dismissed, with costs.
  1. [15]
    On 12 April 2023, appeal 4348/23 was filed. It lists 26 grounds of appeal to which I will return.
  2. [16]
    The central forms of relief sought by the appellant in that appeal include:[5]
  1. “1.That the applicants application to stay the proceedings is refused, be overturned.
  2. 2.In respect of the First and Seconds Respondents application that the originating application be dismissed, bereinstated.
  1. (a)
    The originating application be dismissed, be reinstated due to errors of law and fact.
  2. (b)
    The applicant is to pay the Firs and Seconds Respondents costs of the proceedings, be overturned.
  1. 3.The applicant pay the costs of Mark Obrien responding to the Subpoena issued and returnable on the 27th of March 2023 in respect of responding for this proceeding only, be overturned.
  2. 4.That Justice Brown is recused from any matters at any time involving the appellant for the reasons outlined herein.”
  1. [17]
    The Notice of Appeal also includes Section 4 dealing with “Record Preparation”, in which the appellant stated:

“I undertake to cause a record to be prepared and lodged, and to include all material required to be included in the record under the rules and practice directions and any order or direction in the proceedings.

(As I am a self-represented litigant I would appreciate the help of the court of appeal if possible)”.

Appeal 5226/23

  1. [18]
    The appellant commenced the primary proceedings in this matter seeking an order of statutory review under  the Judicial Review Act 1991 (Qld) in relation to three decisions of Magistrates, seeking that each be set aside. The decisions were:
    1. to refuse to adjourn the hearing of his application for directions;
    2. to dismiss his application for directions; and
    3. to commit him for trial.
  1. [19]
    In addition, the appellant filed an urgent interlocutory injunction, seeking the same relief.
  1. [20]
    On 28 April 2023, Justice Crowley made orders as follows:[6]
    1. dismissing the application for an urgent interlocutory injunction;[7] and
    2. dismissing the application for judicial review.
  1. [21]
    Important features of Justice Crowley’s findings were:
    1. the Magistrate’s decision to refuse cross-examination and to commit him for trial were administrative rather than judicial decisions;[8]
    2. there was no denial of procedural fairness or a breach of natural justice which amounted to jurisdictional error;[9] and
    3. if there were any such error his Honour would, in the exercise of discretion, decline to grant the relief sought and set aside the committal orders.[10]
  2. [22]
    On 2 May 2023 appeal 5226/23 was filed.
  3. [23]
    The appeal has 87 grounds of appeal. The relief sought in that appeal includes the following:[11]
  1. 1.The Urgent Interlocutory Application and the Application for a Statutory Order of Review are dismissed - Be Overturned and Reinstated due to Errors of Law and Fact.
  2. 2.The Magistrate Court decision by Magistrate Previtera to commit the Appellant Be Overturned.
  3. 3.The Applicant is to pay the costs of the Second Respondent- Be Overturned.
  4. 4.The applicant pay the costs of Mark Obrien responding to the Subpoena issued and returnable on the 31st of January 2023 in respect of responding for this proceeding only, Be Overturned.
  5. 5.That Justice Crowley is recused from any matters at any time involving the appellant for the reasons outlined herein.”
  1. [24]
    The Notice of Appeal also includes Section 4 dealing with “Record Preparation”, in which the appellant stated:

“I undertake to cause a record to be prepared and lodged. and to include all material required to be included in the record under the rules and practice directions and any order or direction in the proceedings.

(As I am a self-represented litigant I would appreciate the help of the court of appeal if possible)”.

The steps in the appeals

  1. [25]
    Set out below is a chronology that encompasses the steps taken in respect of CA No 4348/23 and 5226/23. Except for the date of filing of the Notice of Appeal, the steps taken are the same in each case:
  1. 12 April notice of appeal filed in 4348/23; in 5226/23 it was filed on 2 May;
  2. 29 August – review listed;
  3. 5 September – the appellant directed to file an outline and list of authorities, and provide record book index, by 3 October;
  4. 3 October – the appellant failed to deliver his outline or index;
  5. 17 October the registry emailed the appellant, advising it had not received his documents; the appellant promised an update on 20 October;
  6. 24 October – the appellant emailed the registry saying he was not available to appear in the appeals until after March 2024; advised:

“Finally, I rely on the material and grounds of each appeal and I do not intend to do an Outline of Argument by the Appellant in both CA 5226/23 and CA 4384/23 as what I have filed is sufficient plus I do not have the time as you can see.”

  1. 26 October the second respondent advised the registry that in the circumstances it would seek to have the appeal dismissed for want of prosecution; and
  2. 26 October – the appellant advised the registry that:

“Regarding the Appellant’s obligations the Appellant is not compelled to supply an outline of argument as I rely on my grounds of Appeal which is my right to produce or not produce an outline which incorporates the same matters!

Regarding the appeal book the registry has always undertaken to prepare them not me!

The Appellant states that his outline forms part of appeal within the grounds of his appeal which are clearly identified.

The Appellant has identified in the appeal not just the grounds but also identified why and what each allegation relate to in each appeal.

As far as the Appellant is concerned his appeal encompasses both the grounds and an outline!”

Statutory framework

  1. [26]
    The applications have been brought partly relying upon r 775 of the UCPR, which provides:

“(1) If the appellant fails to comply with any step required under these rules or a practice direction, including a practice direction about filing or serving an outline of argument, the Court of Appeal may, at or before the hearing of the appeal and of its own initiative or on an application by a respondent, dismiss the appeal for want of prosecution.”

  1. [27]
    Practice Direction 3 of 2013 – Court of Appeal governs the conduct of appeals. Paragraph 12 provides:

“12.  Unless otherwise provided by this Practice Direction or directed by the Court, a judge of appeal or registrar, each party to a proceeding must lodge and serve a written outline.”

  1. [28]
    The rule is mandatory. An outline must be filed unless the Practice Direction says otherwise or unless the Court has directed otherwise. The Practice Direction does not provide otherwise and there has not been a contrary order.
  2. [29]
    The purpose of the written outline that the Court requires is set out in paragraph 13 of the Practice Direction:

“13. The purpose of the written outline of argument is:

  1. to assist the Court to a better understanding of each party’s contentions before the hearing and to enhance the utility of oral argument at the hearing;
  2. to ensure that each party is aware of the contentions of every other party; and
  3. to shorten the hearing by ensuring the real issues are understood by the parties and the Court beforehand; it is not intended to replace oral argument at the hearing.”
  1. [30]
    What an appellant’s outline must contain is the subject of rule 15 of the Practice Direction:

“15. An appellant’s written outline of argument must:

  1. concisely state the grounds of appeal being argued and any grounds of appeal being abandoned;
  2. identify any error or errors said to have been made by the court or tribunal whose order is subject to appeal and the basis in principle or authority for that contention;
  3. where it is contended that a finding of fact should not have been made or that a finding of fact which was not made should have been made, set out the basis for that contention by reference to the evidence; and
  4. where it is contended that the decision-maker whose order is subject to appeal erred in law, the precise error or errors of law and the basis in principle or authority for that contention.”
  1. [31]
    The purpose of the appellant’s outline includes giving the respondent a structure to which to respond so as to identify for the Court precisely where the contested issues of law and fact ie: r 16. Further, one of the practical effects of the appellant’s outline is set out in r 20:

“20.  Unless the Court or a judge of appeal directs otherwise, a party’s oral argument at the hearing of the appeal will ordinarily be restricted to issues raised in the written outline of argument. The Court may confine presentation of a party’s oral argument to a specified time period.”

  1. [32]
    Paragraph 21 of the Practice Direction provides that an appeal record is required to be lodged:

“21.  An appeal record book must be lodged in all civil and criminal appeals unless otherwise provided by this Practice Direction or directed by the Court, a judge of appeal or registrar. An electronic copy of the appeal record book in searchable PDF format must also be prepared, unless a registrar directs otherwise.”

  1. [33]
    Rule 758 of the UCPR provides the appellant must prepare the appeal book. Rule 759 provides that an appellant may apply for the registry to prepare the appeal book. No such application has been made.
  2. [34]
    Paragraph 25 of the Practice Direction provides that the Court may summarily terminate an appeal:

“25.  Failure to comply with any part of this Practice Direction, or with orders or directions given by the Court, a judge of appeal or registrar, may result in the listing of the proceeding for further orders or directions, whether or not on the application of a party. Under the Supreme Court of Queensland Act 1991 (Qld) or the rules, the Court or a judge of appeal may:

  1. strike out the proceeding; and/or
  2. order costs against any party at fault; and/or
  3. give such directions or make any other appropriate order.”
  1. [35]
    Rule 747(1)(b) UCPR relevantly provides:

747 Content of notice of appeal

  1. A notice of appeal must be in the approved form and state—

  1. briefly and specifically the grounds of appeal; …”

Legal principles – want of prosecution

  1. [36]
    In Arawak Holdings Pty Ltd & Ors v Jackson[12] this Court considered the principles applicable to an application to strike out for want of prosecution and adopted what was said in the Victorian Court of Appeal decision in Muto v Faul.[13] The passage is as follows:[14]

[39]  The decision of the Victorian Court of Appeal in Muto v Faul gives some useful guidance. That court considered that there was inherent power to strike out an appeal for want of prosecution, saying that the conditions for doing so were the same as for dismissing an action on that basis. As to what must be shown, the court said:

‘It appears from the authorities to which we have referred, that the Court should not strike out or dismiss an appeal without deciding the matter of the appeal simply because there has been some failure to comply with the requirements of the rules. The present application has revealed that those rules both in this Court and in the County Court are inadequate. Hood, J.’s question which he asked in a number of cases, ‘How is a respondent hurt by a mere notice of appeal?’, may be answered by saying that a litigant is entitled to know when he is no longer at risk in a particular matter.

So far as appears in the material before us the delay by the present respondent is entirely unjustified. It is well established that any court possesses an inherent jurisdiction to stay or dismiss cases brought before it which are frivolous or vexatious or an abuse of the process of the Court. This inherent power must extend, as this Court said in Duncan v Lowenthal, [1969] VR 180 at p. 182, to purging the Court list of cases which have not been reasonably prosecuted. This inherent power is of course very sparingly exercised but it is an essential power in the administration of justice. It is no answer to the exercise of the power in a proper case that to do so precludes a party from asserting or exercising a right given to him by statute. The books contain many cases in which the power to dismiss an action for want of prosecution is discussed and the conditions upon which the power will be exercised explained. We select a single passage from the judgment of Salmon, LJ (as he then was) in Allen v Sir Alfred McAlpine and Sons Ltd., [1968] 2 QB 229 at p. 268; [1968] 1 All ER 543 at p. 561: ‘A defendant may apply to have an action dismissed for want of prosecution either (a) because of the plaintiff’s failure to comply with the Rules of the Supreme Court or (b) under the court’s inherent jurisdiction. In my view it matters not whether the application comes under limb (a) or (b), the same principles apply. They are as follows: In order for such an application to succeed the defendant must show:-

  1. “(1)
    that there has been inordinate delay. It would be highly undesirable and indeed impossible to attempt to lay down a tariff--so many years or more on one side of the line and a lesser period on the other. What is or is not inordinate delay must depend upon the facts of each particular case. These vary infinitely from case to case, but inordinate delay should not be too difficult to recognize when it occurs.
  2. (2)
    that this inordinate delay is inexcusable. As a rule, until a credible excuse is made out, the natural inference would be that it is inexcusable.
  3. (3)
    that the defendants are likely to be seriously prejudiced by the delay. This may be prejudice at the trial of the issue between themselves and the plaintiff, or between each other, or between themselves and the third parties. In addition to any inference that may properly be drawn from the delay itself, prejudice can sometimes be directly proved. As a rule, the longer the delay, the greater the likelihood of serious prejudice at the trial.’

That case has since been approved in the House of Lords: see Birkett v James, [1978] AC 297.”

Consideration – want of prosecution

  1. [37]
    In each of the appeals there has been undoubted delay by the appellant. As the chronology set out in paragraph [25] above reveals, in the period since the appeals were filed (nine months in the case of 4348/23, and eight months in 5226/23):
  1. (a)
    no step has been taken by the appellant to file an outline;
  2. (b)
    the direction to file an outline has been breached;
  3. (c)
    the appellant has defiantly announced that:
  1. (i)
    he “is not compelled to supply an outline of argument as I rely on my grounds of appeal which is my right to produce or not produce an outline which incorporates the same matters”;
  2. (ii)
    he “is not compelled to supply an outline of argument as I rely on my grounds of Appeal which is my right to produce or not produce an outline”;
  1. (d)
    no index to the record book has been prepared by the appellant;
  2. (e)
    the direction to prepare an index has been breached;
  3. (f)
    the respondents to the appeals and the Court itself have been denied the intended benefits of the outlines; and
  4. (g)
    it is plain that the appellant has no intention of rectifying the position in relation to the lack of an outline; on 24 October 2023, five to six months after the appeals were commenced, the appellant told the Registry: “I do not intend to do an Outline of Argument by the Appellant in both CA 5226/23 and CA 4384/23 as what I have filed is sufficient plus I do not have the time”; and
  5. (h)
    it is plain that the appellant has no intention of rectifying the position in relation to the lack of a record book index; the appellant seeks to say that the Registry agreed to do the book itself, but that does not seem to be correct given what the appellant said in Section 4 of each Notice of Appeal, and there is no evidence of such an agreement.
  1. [38]
    In my view, there has been inordinate delay. No step has been taken after filing the Notices of Appeal. Meanwhile the respondents have been left to make what they can of the points raised in the Notices of Appeal. That is not what the UCPR and Practice Direction intended.
  2. [39]
    Pursuant to UCPR r 5(3) a party undertakes to conduct litigation in an expeditious way. That has not occurred, and seemingly will not occur for so long as the appellant acts in defiance of Registry directions, Practice Direction 3 of 2013 and UCPR r 5(3). Contrary to the position taken by the appellant, it is not his “right to … not produce an outline”.  For those reasons the delay is inexcusable.
  3. [40]
    Further, whilst the appellant has insisted that his appeals be listed one a month in March and April 2024, no evidence has been produced to show that he is unable to prosecute the appeals. He refers to the fact that he is self-represented, does not have the resources of the respondents, and needs time because he is presently away from his files. Yet, the appellant managed to respond to these applications with a 24-page outline in response.
  1. [41]
    In my view, for several reasons the appellant’s references to his medical conditions do not assist. First, none of the medical practitioners have sworn an affidavit to verify the opinions expressed in the reports. They cannot be tendered as proof of the truth of their contents without that.
  2. [42]
    Secondly, some of the reports are dated and therefore of doubtful relevance in any event.
  3. [43]
    Thirdly, some of the reports express opinions that may not be within the competence of the author. Therefore, their utility is doubtful.
  4. [44]
    Fourthly, the appellant has resisted providing some or all of the medical reports to the respondents, with the consequence that this Court cannot take them into account. As was pointed out to the appellant during the course of the hearing, the Court does not engage in secret conversations with, or receive secret submissions from, one party to the exclusion of the other parties.
  5. [45]
    Fifthly, during the hearing on 28 November 2023 the appellant submitted that his medical conditions impacted upon his ability to respond to the applications. For that reason he was given an additional period of time to file any material upon which he wished to rely, whether by way of affidavit or submissions. At that time he was given until 8 December 2023. Subsequently he sought and, with the respondents’ consent, was granted a further extension until 18 December. One of the grounds upon which he sought and was granted that extension was that he was to see his lawyers on about 12 December. On 18 December 2023 the appellant filed a 24-page set of submissions answering, point for point, the outlines that have been filed by the applicants.
  1. [46]
    Further, in my view, the respondents have been and are prejudiced by the delay. They are parties to an appeal that includes grounds attacking their honesty and accusing them of systematic corruption. The outline should have been provided so that they could understand the case levelled at them and where the true issues lie. Instead, they have incurred time and expense trying to have the appellant proceed properly and have been made to wait while the appellant has defied the Court.
  2. [47]
    The appeals should be struck out for want of prosecution.

Consideration – strike out under r 747(1)(b) UCPR

  1. [48]
    Both Notices of Appeal are aptly described as prolix, argumentative and scandalous.

The degree of non-compliance is obvious, extensive and intolerable.[15]

  1. [49]
    The prolixity serves to obscure any real issues and hampers the respondents and the Court in identifying the issues and determining the appeal on properly raised grounds.[16]
  2. [50]
    They do not comply with r 747(1)(b) which requires a Notice of Appeal to state, briefly and specifically, the grounds of appeal.[17]
  3. [51]
    I am only too well aware that the appellant is self-represented. That does not relieve him of the need to comply with the rules which have, as their aim, the just and expeditious resolution of the real issues in dispute. As was said in Thompson v Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Rescue (Qld) Inc & Anor:[18]

“A proper statement of grounds of appeal, in accordance with the rules binding all appellants, is fundamental to a just appeal process.”

Allegations of state of mind of the judge

  1. [52]
    Under UCPR r 150(1) intent is a matter to be specifically pleaded.[19] Many grounds allege a state of mind (intent or knowledge) on the part of a judge without identifying how that is alleged.
  1. [53]
    Many grounds make allegations of corruption or conspiracy but without referring to any basis for saying so.

Scandalous grounds of appeal

  1. [54]
    In both appeals there are many grounds that contend that the primary judge’s orders were made “intentionally” or as part of “conspiracy” against the appellant, designed to “conceal the truth from being exposed in the public forum before a Judge and Jury” about his claims of “police and judicial corruption” or to otherwise deny the appellant his “rights”. None of those grounds identifies the evidentiary basis to allege that:
  1. (a)
    the judge intended an act;
  2. (b)
    the judge was part of a conspiracy;
  3. (c)
    how the conspiracy was formed, and by whom;
  4. (d)
    how the nature of the conspiracy was to conceal the truth from being exposed in the public forum before a judge and jury;
  5. (e)
    how the nature of the conspiracy was to prejudice the appellant by making sure that any evidence produced by the appellant that is capable of exposing police and judicial corruption never sees the light of day;
  6. (f)
    how it is said that the judge condoned the criminal acts to take place by the respondents with her full support;
  7. (g)
    the judge knew that five Magistrates, Police Prosecutors and solicitors were all involved in serious matters concerning Judicial Misconduct/Corruption, and the cover-up of the murder of the appellant’s mother as a barrister, in collusion with others including a Magistrate unlawfully protected the perpetrators from criminal prosecution and incarceration; and
  8. (h)
    how “All these people”, namely Mr O'Higgins and numerous justices within the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal “are a direct party to corruption and collusion in which Justice Brown allowed”.

Examples in 4348/23

  1. [55]
    I do not intend to deal with all grounds individually. There is no need to do so. Some of the grounds will suffice to demonstrate the egregious nature of the Notice of Appeal:[20]
  1. (a)
    Ground 1: Her honour intentionally failed and erred by allowing a conspiracy to prejudice me to conceal the truth from being exposed in the public forum before a Judge and Jury.
  2. (b)
    Ground 4: Her honour failed and erred in a conspiracy to prejudice the appellant by making sure that any evidence produced by the appellant that is capable of exposing Police and Judicial Corruption never sees the light of day.
  3. (c)
    Ground 5: Her honour failed and erred by “unlawfully allowing 3rd party costs to be paid”; and the decision to do so was a case unlawfully decided to protect Police and Judicial Corruption”.
  4. (d)
    Ground 6: Her honour knowingly failed and erred in making sure that the proceedings instigated by the appellant to be tried by a Judge and Jury ONLY would never go ahead nor would the evidence provided by the appellant to justify the allegations in the support of the claims of police and judicial corruption ever be presented to a Jury.
  5. (e)
    Ground 9: Her honour intentionally failed and erred in not allowing justice to prevail and personally made sure that she would dismiss these proceedings.
  6. (f)
    Ground 10: Her honour failed and erred in not administering the law and allowed and condoned the following criminal acts to take place by the respondents with her full support namely: [attempting to pervert the course of justice, conspiring to defeat justice, ignorance of the law-bona fide claim of right, and fraud].
  7. (g)
    Ground 11: this ground alleges that the primary judge “clearly demonstrated the following acts of bias”. Then follows a description of what actual and apprehended bias is, but no particulars of the basis for alleging that on the part of the primary judge.
  8. (h)
    Ground 16: Her honour failed and erred in her decision by dismissing the proceeding especially as she at all times knew that this matter was to never be determined before any Justice alone.

Her honour ambushed the appellant by attempting to offer the appellant an opportunity to personally withdraw his proceedings.

This was a premeditated act to try and trick the appellant into being personally responsible for the proceedings in being vacated or dismissed and her honour allowed and condoned the unlawful actions by the respondents to pervert justice and to conspire to defeat justice.

  1. (i)
    Grounds 18, 19, 20, 21, 22 and 24: “Justice Brown intentionally failed and erred”, or acted “knowingly and intentionally” in doing something.
  2. (j)
    Ground 23: Justice Brown intentionally failed and erred by denying a self- represented litigant a fair and impartial hearing even though she knew this was a serious matter claiming that five (5) Magistrates namely Magistrate Strofield, Magistrate Courtney, Deputy Chief Magistrate Anthony Getts, Magistrate Previtera and Magistrate Costanzo as well as Police Prosecutors Maria Gittins (Solicitor) and Carolyn McKeon (Barrister) and Solicitors Mark Obrien and Kurt Pitman who are all involved in serious matters concerning Judicial Misconduct/ Corruption as well as other matters including the cover up of the murder of the appellants innocent mother Mrs. Marie Dupois as Barrister Daniel Whitmore in collusion with others including Magistrate Stephen Courtney unlawfully protected the perpetrators from criminal prosecution and incarceration.
  3. (k)
    Ground 25: Justice Brown failed and erred to act impartially as the 1st Respondents Counsel namely Mr. David Keane KC is the son of Justice Patrick Keane who was instructed by Mark Obrien to act for the 1st Respondent due to his personal relationship within the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal outside the courtroom setting.
  4. (l)
    Ground 26: Justice Brown failed and erred to act impartially as she also knew that the 2nd Respondents Counsel Namely Mr. Philip O'Higgins Barrister is also a personal friend of numerous justices within the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal outside the courtroom setting as he acts for Crown Law.

All these people are a direct party to corruption and collusion in which Justice Brown allowed to pervert justice as her honour certainly did not act impartially or in the public interest.

Examples in 5226/23

  1. [56]
    Once again, I do not intend to deal with all grounds individually. There is no need to do so. Some of the grounds will suffice to demonstrate the egregious nature of this Notice of Appeal:[21]
  1. (a)
    Ground 2r: Justice Crowley failed and erred as he knew that Magistrate Previtera could not lawfully and impartially make a finding that there is sufficient evidence to commit the appellant by simply reading untested statements that were strenuously opposed by the appellant to not allow any statements to be tendered, however Justice Crowley condoned this unethical conduct by Magistrate Previtera instead of putting a stop to this corruption.
  2. (b)
    Ground 2s: Justice Crowley failed and erred as he knew that Magistrate Previtera made serious legal errors in her decision by refusing to read the extensive vital material previously supplied to Magistrate Strofield such as recordings, witness statements everything supplied, thousands of pages which clearly offsets the false allegations being made against the appellant by the prosecution however Justice Crowley once again condone this unlawful conduct involving the bricked up case against the appellant.
  3. (c)
    Ground 2z: Justice Crowley failed and erred in his decision as he knew that the appellant had legal rights such as Procedural Rights, Civil Rights and Rights under the Human Rights Act 2019 which states that everyone has a right for a fair hearing however, there was no way that Justice Crowley had any intention of allowing the appellant any of his rights in accordance with any laws.
  4. (d)
    Ground 2aa: Justice Crowley failed and erred in his decision and has severely prejudiced the appellant’s case in taking away any opportunity the appellant has to immediately be acquitted of these fabricated and malicious, vexatious and abuse of process allegations / charges and has intentionally continued to force the appellant into an unlawful trial.

The appellant is not experienced in criminal law and Justice Crowley has intentionally placed the appellant’s life at great risk for committing no offences of any nature, this is a complete premeditated set up.

  1. (e)
    Further Ground 1: Justice Crowley intentionally failed and erred by allowing a conspiracy to prejudice the appellant by concealing the truth from being exposed in the public forum.
  2. (f)
    Further Ground 3: Justice Crowley failed and erred in a conspiracy to prejudice the appellant by making sure that any evidence produced by the appellant that is capable of exposing Police and Judicial Corruption never sees the light of day.
  3. (g)
    Further Ground 4: Justice Crowley failed and erred by unlawfully allowing 3rd party costs to be paid to the 2nd respondent as well as granting additional costs regarding a subpoena issued against Mr. Mark O'Brien who acts for the 2nd respondent which are also 3rd party costs.

The appellant accepts that in accordance with In Interchase Corporation Ltd (In Liq) v Grosvenor Hill (Qld) Pty Ltd (No 3) McPherson JA considered the history of r 689 and the meaning of the word “event” in the phrase “costs follow the event” in r 689(1), however this only applies to cases that have lawfully failed before a court, not cases that have already been unlawfully decided to protect Police and Judicial Corruption.

  1. (h)
    Further Ground 5: Justice Crowley intentionally failed and erred in not allowing justice to prevail and personally made sure that he would dismiss these proceedings.
  2. (i)
    Further Ground 6: Justice Crowley failed and erred in not administering the law and allowed and condoned the following criminal acts to take place by Magistrate Previtera as well as the respondents with the full support of Justice Crowley; [attempting to pervert the course of justice, conspiring to defeat justice, ignorance of the law – bona fide claim of right, fraud]
  3. (j)
    Further Ground 15: Justice Crowley failed and erred in his decision by dismissing the proceeding especia1ly as he at all times knew that this matter should never have been committed. … This was a premeditated act to defeat justice.
  4. (k)
    Further Ground 16: Justice Crowley failed and erred in accordance with her jurisdiction by failing to apply Section 367 (1) and (2) of the UCPR as well as Section 58 of the Constitution where his honour had the irrefutable legal right to use his inherent justification and powers in the interest of justice to not dismiss a serious case involving police and judicial corruption purely for the purposes to protect and cover up unlawful conduct by Magistrate Previtera, the Respondents and others.
  5. (l)
    Further Ground 17: His honour failed and erred in: … h. Knowingly and intentionally failing to allow an impartial hearing.
  6. (m)
    Further Ground 21: Justice Crowley intentionally failed and erred by denying a self-represented litigant a fair and impartial hearing even though he knew these were very serious matter claiming that five (5) Magistrates namely Magistrate Strofield, Magistrate Courtney, Deputy Chief Magistrate Anthony Getts, Magistrate Previtera and Magistrate Costanzo as well as Police Prosecutors Maria Gittins (Solicitor) and Carolyn McKeon (Barrister) and Solicitors Mark Obrien and Kurt Pitman who are all involved in matters concerning Judicial Misconduct / Corruption as well as other matters including the cover up of the murder of the appellants innocent mother Mrs. Marie Dupois as Barrister Daniel Whitmore in collusion with others including Magistrate Stephen Courtney unlawfully protected the perpetrators from criminal prosecution and incarceration.
  7. (n)
    Further Ground 23: Justice Crowley failed and erred to act impartially as the 2nd Respondents Counsel namely Mr. David Keane KC is the son of Justice Patrick Keane who was instructed by Mark Obrien to act for the 2nd Respondent due to his personal relationship within the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal outside the courtroom setting.
  8. (o)
    Further Ground 24: Justice Crowley failed and erred to act impartially as she also knew that the 1st Respondents Counsel Namely Mr. Philip O'Higgins Barrister is also a personal friend of numerous justices within the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal outside the courtroom setting as he acts for Crown Law.

All these people are a direct party to corruption and collusion in which Justice Crowley allowed to pervert justice as his honour certainly did not act impartial1y or in the public interest.

  1. (p)
    Additional Grounds 3 and 18: allegations that the judge “intentionally” failed to act in a particular way.
  2. (q)
    Additional Ground 7: Justice Crowley intentionally failed and erred in not accepting that it was impossible for the appellant to obtain medical evidence about the sudden loss of his aunty and his cognitive state whilst the appellant was in court before him personally on the 23rd of November 2022 and then the following morning on the 24th of November 2022 before Magistrate Previtera as well as the appellant having to drive 4 hours each day to court and having no sleep.

So how is this possible for the appellant to appear in hospital or at a doctors surgery whilst the appellant is driving to and from court on 2 consecutive days so this excuse made by Magistrate Previtera namely “That the Adjournment Application due to the lack of medical evidence is denied, is ridiculous and baseless!

Magistrate Previtera then proceeded to hear the Cross-Examination Application, this alone constitute inhumane conduct and clearly verifies that the Magistrate was instructed to commit the appellant no matter what and Justice Crowley knew that was premeditated and simply swept it under the carpet.

  1. (r)
    Additional Ground 9: … These continued and unnecessary attempt to belittle the appellant can only be described as appalling and bias conduct by a Supreme Court Justice (A newly appoint one) that was out for revenge and used his power, not administer law but to defeat the administration of Justice.

The appellant knows that the matter before Justice Crowley was undoubtedly won by the appellant due to the serious legal errors made by Magistrate Previtera in which Justice Crowley intentionally swept Magistrate Previtera’s unlawful conduct under the carpet simply by using his power improperly to impede the appellants legal and constitutional rights.

  1. (s)
    Additional Ground 10: … It is clear that Justice Crowley’s failure to act impartially and investigate matters that are within his reach were completely and intentionally set aside as Justice Crowley a Supreme Court Justice had no interest in the truth and went on a mission to protect the Judiciary and in particular Magistrate Previtera from unethical and immoral conduct that brings the judiciary into disrepute.
  2. (t)
    Additional Ground 16: … Justice Crowley has intentionally impeded the appellant’s rights to a fair and impartial / lawful hearing and is absolutely and irrefutably bias and this is further demonstrated by his remarks after Justice Crowley’s reading the fabricated police statements.
  3. (u)
    Additional Ground 20: … Justice Crowley has clearly established and proven that his judgment is bias, self-serving and constitutes and abuse of process, is malicious and vexatious as well as extremely defamatory toward the appellant.
  4. (v)
    Additional Ground 21: Justice Crowley failed and erred in his decision as the Supreme Court has a duty to all persons in the interest of Justice to administer the law impartially and in the public interest and MUST NOT allow unlawful or unethical conduct to take place by any police or judicial officers, Justice Crowley has condoned, supported the perverting and defeating of Justice by Magistrate Previtera and the Respondents.
  5. (w)
    Additional Ground 26: … However, Justice Crowley has shown no interest in not impeding the rights of the appellant but instead he protects the Magistrate, he protects the Respondents and denies the appellant Natural Justice this is absolute an abuse of process and is unlawful and certainly does not fall into the category of procedural fairness or Justice, this constitutes a travesty of Justice!
  1. [57]
    In no case (in either appeal) is any allegation of intention, conspiracy, corruption or collusion accompanied by identification of the evidence to support them. The deficiencies in such grounds were raised with the appellant by me at an earlier review on 29 August 2023.[22] The appellant was then urged to reconsider the grounds and amend them to comply with the rules. Plainly he does not intend to do so.
  2. [58]
    The absence of any identification of the basis for such allegations is made all the worse by the absence of any written outline that might have served to explain or even (hopefully) confine the claims.
  3. [59]
    The grounds are scandalous in the assertions they make.[23]
  4. [60]
    Further, as is evident from the terms of those I have set out above, they are prolix, repetitive, and argumentative.

Pointless grounds

  1. [61]
    Both Notices of Appeal contain grounds which make little or no sense. Some examples will suffice to make the point.

Examples in 4348/23

  1. [62]
    Grounds 2 and 3 allege that the primary judge did not take into account that the appellant never requested a judge-alone trial or pressured him into a judge-alone trial. This ignores the fact that the proceedings were initiated by Origination Application in respect of which a trial by jury is not available.
  1. [63]
    Ground 7 alleges that the primary judge “failed and erred to act impartially in the interest of justice by not allowing these proceedings that her honour instigated to be stayed pending an investigation into the conduct of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal in covering up these proceedings”,[24] as outlined in a letter sent by the appellant to the primary judge. The proceedings were not instigated by the primary judge. The letter (attached to the Notice of Appeal in 4348/23) alleged that the appellant’s “associates” had:

“… now officially instigated investigations with the Crimes and Corruption Commission, The Attorney General’s Office Qld and The Premiers Office Qld and The Office of The Prime Minister (Canberra) and the Qld Legal Services Commission as well as Ethical Standards.”

  1. [64]
    Putting aside for the moment the fact that the letter itself made totally unsubstantiated and scandalous allegations of corruption in the courts, the scope of the alleged investigations were no basis to withhold dealing with the case. Not one fact was advanced, nor has been since, to suggest any of the nominated bodies ever intended to start an investigation if they had jurisdiction to do so.
  1. [65]
    Moreover, the letter asserted that: “A Royal Commission is being requested involving these matters as there are numerous other matters involving similar corruption that will undoubtedly form be part of a Royal Commission into Police and Judicial Corruption in Qld.” No fact was advanced to show that a request for a Royal Commission had been sought or was likely to be instituted. Nor was there any fact advanced to show what the “numerous other matters” were.
  2. [66]
    Ground 8 attacked the refusal to stay the committal proceedings on the basis that as at 27 March 2023 the primary judge knew the appellant “had no time to appeal” her Honour’s initial decision on 15 March 2023. Leaving aside the failure to particularise the alleged state of knowledge, the fact is that there was ample time to file a Notice of Appeal, had the appellant wished to do so, in the 12-day interval.
  3. [67]
    Grounds 12-15 allege that the primary judge misunderstood or misapplied the evidence, but there are no particulars that show what evidence or how it was misunderstood or misapplied.
  4. [68]
    Ground 17 alleges that the primary judge had power to not dismiss the appellant’s “serious case involving police and judicial corruption purely for the purposes to protect and cover up unlawful police and judicial officers”. Leaving aside the entirely unparticularised allegation of corruption,[25] as is explained in paragraphs [96]-[101] of these reasons, the appellant refused to lead evidence on the trial, which is why it was dismissed.

Examples in 5226/23

  1. [69]
    Ground 2c seeks to argue the merits of the Magistrate’s refusal to grant an adjournment when the real question was whether that decision was of an “administrative character” for the purposes of s 4 of the JRA. There is no appeal from the primary judge’s finding that it was not.
  2. [70]
    Ground 2o states that the primary judge “failed and erred in his decision by clearly demonstrating Actual Judicial Bias as his honour obstructed and prevented Justice from being obtained lawfully and in accordance with Procedural Fairness.”[26] In the absence of particulars of the facts that show actual bias the ground is incomprehensible.
  3. [71]
    Ground 2p states that the primary judge condoned “the unlawful and premeditated conduct” of the Magistrate, and “decided to simply sweep it under the carpet”. In the absence of particulars of the facts that show the alleged states of mind, the ground is incomprehensible.
  4. [72]
    Further Ground 8 alleges actual bias on the part of the primary judge (“clear hatred toward the appellant” and “the outcome was already prearranged”). However, in the absence of particulars of the facts that show the alleged state of mind, the ground is incomprehensible.
  1. [73]
    Further Ground 10 alleges that the primary judge was “constantly defending Mr. Keane”.[27] It is then said that the appellant and some others formed the opinion that the primary judge “clearly has some type of personal relationship with Mr. Keane” because Mr Keane’s father was previously a Supreme Court judge. No particulars are given at all. In the absence of proper particulars the ground is incomprehensible.
  2. [74]
    Further Ground 11 alleges that the primary judge erred by “judging against the weight of evidence”.  No particulars are given at all.
  1. [75]
    Further Grounds 12-14 allege that the primary judge misunderstood or misapplied the evidence, but there are no particulars that show what evidence or how it was misunderstood or misapplied.
  2. [76]
    Further Grounds 18-20 and 22, and Additional Grounds 3-5, 11, 15, 17, 19 and 27- 29 are bald assertions without any particularity that would enable the reader to discern the basis of the allegation. In the absence of proper particulars, the grounds are incomprehensible.
  3. [77]
    Further Ground 30 alleges that the primary judge “even failed and erred in his own judgment by initially identifying the Judicial Review Act 1991 (Qld) instead of the Judicial Review Act 1999 (Qld) clearly meaning that Justice Crowley has made some serious legal errors especially in this matter!”[28] The relevant Act is the Judicial Review Act 1991. There is no rational view that any misdescription occurred, let alone that the wrong section was applied.

Vexatious appeal – 4348/23

  1. [78]
    The QPS seek to strike out the appeal on the same basis a 5226/23, but as well on the basis that the appeal is vexatious.
  2. [79]
    It is submitted that where the appellant chose not to proceed with the trial in the Supreme Court, an appeal against the dismissal of those proceedings is vexatious. Consideration of this ground requires some examination of the hearings before Brown J on 15 March and 27 March 2023.
  3. [80]
    As explained in paragraphs [6] to [14] above, the appellant commenced the proceedings by way of Originating Application, seeking a trial as to whether the charges in the Magistrates Court should be permanently stayed.
  4. [81]
    On 25 November 2022, the trial of the Originating Application was set down, to commence on 27 March 2023. On 15 March 2023, Brown J refused an application to adjourn the trial. Her Honour’s reasons elucidate the position taken by the appellant and the trial process:

“The three main reasons why Mr Dupois seeks to adjourn the application are that he wishes to have nine more respondents joined to the trial of the action, he wishes to proceed by way of claim and statement of claim, and he wishes to elect to have a trial by jury. Under rule 471 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (Qld) (‘UCPR’), there may only be an election for trial by jury for a civil action which is commenced by claim. If the matter was to proceed in the way that Mr Dupois wishes it to, that will require the relevant applications to be made to the Court for exchange of pleadings and further evidence and other interlocutory steps. That will mean the determination of the matter will be delayed for some months.”

  1. [82]
    Her Honour examined the claims made by the appellant: (i) that he did not understand that a trial by jury could not be had under an Originating Application, (ii) that he always made his position clear that he desired a trial by jury, and (iii) that directions made by Kelly J permitted him to convert the proceedings to one on a claim and statement of claim, and therefore a trial by jury. As to that her Honour said:

“Justice Kelly did not make any such directions. Mr Dupois’ belief in that regard appears to arise out of the fact that his Honour directed the respondents to write to Mr Dupois to identify the reasons why the originating application was not compliant with the UCPR, in circumstances where the respondents had raised the fact that relief was sought in the originating application against persons who were not named as parties, which they contended was required by rule 26(2) of the UCPR.

Justice Kelly had ordered that the proceeding be placed on the self- represented litigants’ list for case management. It was, therefore, managed by Justice Freeburn. Justice Freeburn made orders on 18 October and 25 October 2022 to progress the matter to final hearing. Mr Dupois appealed the orders of Justice Freeburn made on 18 October 2022. According to what Mr Dupois told the court, he told Justice Freeburn on 18 October 2022 that Justice Freeburn had not given him sufficient time, as a self-represented litigant, to comply with the orders made and that he would not be complying with them.

The order of 18 October 2022 is clear on its face insofar as it requires an application to be made to do any of the matters outlined in paragraph 1. While Mr Dupois carries the difficulties of being a self- represented litigant navigating the legal system, he is an intelligent man and it is difficult to accept that he did not know he needed to make an application to seek leave of the court for joinder and for the matter to proceed by way of claim and trial by jury. It is, however, at least evident from his Affidavit-amendments of 16 January 2023 that he did know he had to take active steps, by the order of 18 October 2022, in order to have other parties joined and for the matter to proceed by way of claim and for there to be trial by jury.”

  1. [83]
    Brown J found that even if the appellant was confused “in terms of what the nature of the application was he had to make and that he had to seek leave”, it was plain that “he did know that he had to take some sort of active steps and did not take such steps until 16 January 2023.”
  2. [84]
    Brown J referred to the fact that as early as 1 March 2023, the appellant made it clear that he would apply to adjourn the trial. Her Honour then examined the claims that the appellant made and sought to make by his proposed amendments, and the parties

he sought to join. Her Honour also referred to the fact that the committal had taken place, and the indictment awaited presentation.

  1. [85]
    Her Honour then made findings as to several matters:
  1. (a)
    the matters raised in the Affidavit-amendments, on its face, sought relief far beyond that sought in the originating application;
  2. (b)
    given the disparate nature of the relief sought in the Affidavit-amendments from that in the originating application, there was not a compelling reason as to why the trial to address the matters which are the subject of the originating application needed to be delayed so as to include the matters and the parties raised in the Affidavit-amendments;
  3. (c)
    “there presently does not appear to be reasonable prospects of a court ordering a joinder of the claims against the further respondents and for the originating application to be amended to proceed by way of claim on the basis of the present material”;
  4. (d)
    it was not apparent that there was a risk to the appellant of inconsistent findings;
  5. (e)
    the appellant “seeks to adjourn the trial in order to be able to make his applications to join the additional parties and have the matter proceed by way of claim, which will require the production of a statement of claim and then to be able to elect to have that matter heard by trial and jury.”
  1. [86]
    Brown J then referred to the factors to be taken into account, which included: (i) that the trial had been set down since 25 November 2022, (ii) the late application to adjourn, the orders made as to when applications had to be made (all to be completed by 1 November 2022), (iii) the lack of a compelling explanation from the appellant as to his misapprehension and delay, (iv) that even as a self-represented litigant the appellant had to abide by the rules, (v) the relief had to be determined with some expedition, (vi) the lack of identifiable prejudice to the appellant in refusing the adjournment, and (vi) that there was no real risk that the appellant’s allegations of criminal conduct, fraud or corruption would not be exposed, even before a judge- alone trial.
  2. [87]
    On that basis the application to adjourn was refused.
  3. [88]
    The appellant then sought a stay of that order. Her Honour examined the material factors affecting that decision, including those applicable on the assumption that her decision to refuse an adjournment was wrong. Those factors included this:

“In that regard, Mr Dupois has raised the fact that he is not prepared to go ahead with the trial if it is not to be trial by jury and that he can seek to issue fresh proceedings if that be the case. Given that he can seek to issue separate proceedings to do what he proposes and that the granting of the stay would avoid him being exposed to the prejudice of having to go through a trial and then the appeal process as well.

The difficulty with the submission is that the question of adjournment is one where the Court has to weigh up all of the relevant factors in order to determine whether the interests of justice favour the granting of an adjournment or not. In the present case, the effect of the refusal is, obviously, for the trial to proceed. Granting a stay of that decision would not affect the fact that there is still a trial in place for which the dates have been set and which is to proceed on 27 March.”

  1. [89]
    The stay was refused.
  2. [90]
    No appeal was instituted against the orders made on 15 March 2023 by Brown J. Appeal 4348/23 only concerns the orders made on 27 March 2023, at the trial itself. Thus, no challenge was brought to the orders refusing an adjournment of the trial to permit amendments to be made as to the nature of the trial. That necessarily meant that there was no challenge to the orders which had the effect that the trial would be a judge-alone trial.
  3. [91]
    On the day of the trial itself, the appellant sought a stay of the proceedings, the basis for which was raised the day before the trial, in a letter from the appellant.
  4. [92]
    That letter[29] included the following statements as to the basis for the stay:
  1. (a)
    “… as a direct consequence of certain Justices of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal that have intentionally impeded every legal and constitutional right I have to prosecute any case impartially and lawfully that all the proceedings involving this matter namely File Number 6119/22 and all relevant interlocutory appeals and matters before the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, that due to these circumstances my associates have now officially instigated investigations with the Crimes and Corruption Commission, The Attorney General’s Office Qld and The Premiers Office Qld and The Office of The Prime Minister (Canberra) and the Qld Legal Services Commission as well as Ethical Standards”;
  2. (b)
    “This court and others have intentionally made sure that these proceedings are to never take place before a Judge and Jury Involving all my filed evidence so that these this case never sees the light of day.”
  3. (c)
    “The material involving all these proceedings establish that certain high profile Justices intentionally made sure that:
  1. A.The material would be sealed and or destroyed.
  2. B.That a trial before a Judge and Jury would never take place.
  3. C.That the relevant respondents to form part of the proceedings would never face court.”
  1. (d)
    “Formal complaints of corruption have been instigated against the entities listed below involving the above criminal codes as each of these legal persons are directly a party to corruption and a cover up in collusion with others.”
  2. (e)
    They are all also being referred to the Qld Legal Services Commission.
  1. 1.Mr. Mark O'Brien - Solicitor for the Police Commissioners Office.
  2. 2.Mr. David Keane newly appointed Kings Counsel (The Son of Justice Patrick Keane and a personal friend of the Justices involved in these matters)
  3. 3.Mr. Kurt Pitman - a Solicitor for Crown Law.
  4. 4.Mr. Phillip O'Higgins - a Barrister for Crown Law.

These 4 individuals have jointly committed serious criminal acts and are to be independently investigated and dealt with in accordance with the law as well as evidence to prove their personal friendships with Judicial Officers in the Supreme and Court of Appeal.”

  1. (f)
    “The material and recordings being supplied to each of the above authorities will undoubtedly establish that the certain members of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal deliberately took part in allowing Justice to not take place fairly and impartially to protect their fellow Judicial Officers.”
  2. (g)
    referring to a trial without a jury, “I would never play a role in this set up which is designed to throw out my case and declare that my evidence is inadmissible and must be destroyed to cover up all this up.”
  3. (h)
    “The above authorities once all the evidence is received will have to determine who they feel are criminally responsible.

A Royal Commission is being requested involving these matters as there are numerous other matters involving similar corruption that will undoubtedly form be part of a Royal Commission into Police and Judicial Corruption in Qld.”

  1. [93]
    What was sought by the letter was, relevantly:

“That these proceedings be stayed pending an investigation by the above authorities involving the events that have occurred in all these proceedings.”

  1. [94]
    Brown J explained in her Honour’s reasons:

“In Mr Dupois’ submission, the court should stay the proceedings because he seeks to have the Supreme Court, or members of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, and potentially the respondents to this matter, investigated by an external body because he believes that there is no impartial basis upon which a decision can be made by this court and that the decision not to permit the matter to proceed by way of judge and jury is a result of the courts and others intentionally making sure that the proceedings are never to take place before a judge and jury. Mr Dupois has indicated that he does not believe that his matter can be heard other than by trial of judge and jury and that he is not willing to have his proceeding heard on any other basis.”

  1. [95]
    Brown J rejected the application for a stay, giving these reasons:

“The present application to seek a stay of these proceedings while the matter is investigated by an external body would, in effect, give rise to a de facto stay, or rather, an abrogation of the decision to grant the adjournment, which was determined last week. The fact that the matter - that Mr Dupois seeks to have conduct investigated by external bodies which he is perfectly entitled to do, does not give a basis to this court seeking - a basis to this court staying the proceedings, particularly in the context of an adjournment having been refused last week. In the circumstances, I refuse the application for the stay at the proceedings.”

  1. [96]
    Brown J then asked the appellant to say what his position was in respect of the trial. The appellant said he would play no role in a trial before a judge alone:

“… I’ve made my position clear from day 1 that I will play no role in in a trial before a judge alone because if I did, then all of the material that I’ve filed, and all the evidence that I’ve filed will be seen when I file the new proceedings as an abusive process, and I will not put myself in that position under any circumstances. I’ve made it clear, so your Honour insists that on the matter running today, not me. I’m only here as – as a respect to the court. You know. And so I haven’t changed my view from – from the first day these proceedings were filed.”

  1. [97]
    What is apparent from that passage is that the appellant had no intention of running the trial, and that position predated 27 March 2023.
  2. [98]
    In response to a question by Brown J, the appellant made it abundantly clear that he was not discontinuing the proceedings:

“No, your Honour. I’m not discontinuing anything. If you want to throw it out, you throw it out. Because by me discontinuing, … I’m acknowledging that I’ve discontinued the proceedings, whereas I’m not. It’s up to you to throw out the proceedings … It’s not up to me, because … this has the thing that you chose, not me.”

  1. [99]
    Brown J then explained to the appellant that his refusal to proceed with the trial might be construed as an abandonment of the proceedings. The appellant denied that he intended to abandon the proceedings:

“Well, that’s up to you, your Honour, but I’m not abandoning these proceedings. My proceedings were before a judge and jury. My proceedings were never, ever, ever, before a judge alone. So whatever terminology your Honour wishes to use is completely up to your Honour. But I will play no role before a judge alone. …I’m sorry, I mean no disrespect, but I don’t know what else to say to your Honour. I’ve made my decision clear a hundred times, and I’ve also been given external advice that if I run this, any material that’s used, will be used as an abusive process in the new proceedings that I’ve filed. So I’m not going to do that.”

  1. [100]
    Brown J then reiterated that the appellant was being given the chance, if he wished it, to discontinue the proceedings. The appellant again denied that he any such intention.
  1. [101]
    At that point the respondents applied to have the proceedings dismissed as there was no material in support of it. Her Honour dismissed the proceedings:

“The present matter was set down for a three-day hearing. Mr Dupois has indicated that he is not willing to proceed with the trial if it is before a judge alone. He does not wish to discontinue the proceedings because he does not wish … it to be perceived that he did not wish to prosecute the matter. His position is that he did not wish to prosecute the matter unless it was before a judge and jury. … I clarified whether he wished to discontinue the proceedings. He has indicated he does not and he will not proceed with the trial. In those circumstances, he is the plaintiff and he has indicated he will not proceed with the trial and call evidence.

As I’ve explained to Mr Dupois, unless he actually calls evidence and reads the affidavit material upon which he relies for the trial, then as has been submitted to the court, there is no evidence before the trial supporting the application. In the circumstances, both of the respondents seek dismissal of the originating application and, in the circumstances, that is the appropriate order, given that the plaintiff, in the circumstances, does not wish to prosecute the trial as it stands. The originating application is dismissed.”

  1. [102]
    Once that sequence of events is understood several important matters emerge.
  1. [103]
    First, on 15 March 2023 an adjournment was sought to permit the appellant, inter alia, to amend so as to make the trial one where he could elect for a trial by jury. That adjournment was refused. No challenge was brought against the decision on 15 March 2023. No further application was made to permit the appellant to convert the proceedings to one where a trial by jury was possible.
  1. [104]
    From that point the trial could only have been by judge alone, as the proceedings were instituted by Originating Application and the appellant had been denied the chance to amend so as it gave him the election he sought.
  1. [105]
    Secondly, before the trial day, 27 March 2023, it is evident that the appellant had already determined not to proceed with the trial: see paragraphs [91]-[97] above.
  1. [106]
    Thirdly, the stay application brought on the first day of the trial was not designed to permit the proceedings to be converted to a jury trial. It was to permit an outside investigation into certain Judges of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, and potentially the respondents.
  1. [107]
    Fourthly, even though he was given more than one chance to discontinue, the appellant deliberately eschewed that course. He articulated a position on that which was on the product of deliberation and, possibly, “external advice”.
  1. [108]
    Fifthly, the appellant made it plain that he would take no part in the trial. That was, at least in part, because he intended to file new proceedings in which the same evidence would be adduced: see paragraphs [96] and [99] above. Consequently, he made a deliberate decision to adduce no evidence. The inevitable result was that the proceedings would be dismissed, and they were.
  1. [109]
    In my view, in circumstances above, particularly where the orders on 15 March 2023 were not appealed and the appellant decided not to proceed with the trial, the appeal in CA 4348/23 is bound to fail. The submission that it is vexatious should be accepted.
  1. [110]
    Further, and for the same reasons, the grounds of appeal in 4348/23 are scandalous and vexatious.
  1. [111]
    Moreover, there is reason to conclude that the appellant is seeking to actively conceal relevant issues from this Court and the respondents, contrary to the intention of the UCPR and the Practice Direction, and contrary to all concepts of fairness.
  1. [112]
    In 4348/23 the Second Respondent[30] submitted:[31]

“4. Moreover, even prior to the orders of the primary judge, Mr Dupois had been committed for trial arising from the criminal charges being dealt with in the Magistrates Court. Following the trial, Mr Dupois’ application for judicial review seeking review of the decision to commit him was unsuccessful. Mr Dupois has not produced any evidence that he remains a defendant to any charges in the Magistrates Court, let alone charges with a connection to the criminal charges that he sought to stay. In the absence of an ongoing proceeding to be stayed, there is no utility in the underlying originating application filed by Mr Dupois (seeking a stay of criminal charges in the Magistrates Court) and therefore no utility in any appeal by which he seeks to set aside the dismissal of that application.”

  1. [113]
    The appellant’s response to that submission, in his, is:[32]

4.   Completely disagree as I stated to his honour Justice Morrison at the last mention that there are certain tactical reasons why the proceedings should remain as all parties have to date missed the reason why and in time I will explain why this appeal is necessary.

I will not divulge my reason in these submissions to the respondents whom have clearly acted as my enemies.

This is why I will not disadvantage my matter however; this will be clearly identified and explained at the appeal before the full court of appeal.”

  1. [114]
    It is not open to the appellant to hide points that matter, reserving them for another day. In the face of an application to strike out or dismiss the appeal for want of prosecution, under the UCPR and in the inherent jurisdiction of the Court, the appellant cannot be heard to say “in time I will explain why this appeal is necessary”, but “I will not divulge my reason in these submissions” and “this will be clearly identified and explained at the appeal before the full court”.
  1. [115]
    In my view, that obstructionist and defiant attitude lends support to the conclusion that the appeal is vexatious.

Inherent jurisdiction – vexatious appeal – 5226/23

  1. [116]
    The applicants invoke the inherent jurisdiction of the court to have the appeal dismissed.

Legal principles inherent jurisdiction

  1. [117]
    Though the phrase “inherent jurisdiction” has been adopted by the applicants, it is probably better understood as an “inherent power” to control misuse of the court’s procedures in a way which is manifestly unfair to the other party, or which would bring the administration of justice into disrepute. In Batistatos v Roads and Traffic Authority of New South Wales[33] the High Court adopted what was said by Lord Diplock in Hunter v Chief Constable of West Midlands Police:[34]

[6] Accordingly, in Hunter v Chief Constable of the West Midlands Police Lord Diplock used the term ‘inherent power’ rather than ‘inherent jurisdiction’. In Walton v Gardiner, the majority, Mason CJ, Deane and Dawson JJ, accepted as correct the passage in Hunter in which Lord Diplock spoke of ‘the inherent power which any court of justice must possess to prevent misuse of its procedure in a way which, although not inconsistent with the literal application of its procedural rules, would nevertheless be manifestly unfair to a party to litigation before it, or would otherwise bring the administration of justice into disrepute among right-thinking people’. His Lordship went on to describe as ‘very varied’ the circumstances where ‘abuse of process’ can arise. It will be necessary to return to that consideration later in these reasons.”

  1. [118]
    In Batistatos the Court said that what amounts to an abuse of court process “is insusceptible of a formulation comprising closed categories”, and continually developing.[35] The Court went on:[36]

[10] A convenient starting point for consideration of the development that has occurred is the statement made by Lord Blackburn in 1885, in a case frequently cited in Australian courts. The causes of action at stake in Metropolitan Bank Ltd v Pooley were in tort.  Lord Blackburn said:

‘[F]rom early times (I rather think, though I have not looked at it enough to say, from the earliest times) the Court had inherently in its power the right to see that its process was not abused by a proceeding without reasonable grounds, so as to be vexatious and harassing the Court had the right to protect itself against such an abuse; but that was not done upon demurrer, or upon the record, or upon the verdict of a jury or evidence taken in that way, but it was done by the Court informing its conscience upon affidavits, and by a summary order to stay the action which was brought under such circumstances as to be an abuse of the process of the Court; and in a proper case they did stay the action.’”

  1. [119]
    In Batistatos the Court also adopted a passage from Ridgeway v The Queen,[37]dealing with the breadth of the concept of abuse of process:[38]

[14]  In Ridgeway v The Queen, Gaudron J explained:

‘The powers to prevent an abuse of process have traditionally been seen as including a power to stay proceedings instituted for an improper purpose, as well as proceedings that are ‘frivolous, vexatious or oppressive’. This notwithstanding, there is no very precise notion of what is vexatious or oppressive or what otherwise constitutes an abuse of process. Indeed, the courts have resisted, and even warned against, laying down hard and fast definitions in that regard. That is necessarily so. Abuse of process cannot be restricted to ‘defined and closed categories’ because notions of justice and injustice, as well as other considerations that bear on public confidence in the administration of justice, must reflect contemporary values and, as well, take account of the circumstances of the case. That is not to say that the concept of ‘abuse of process’ is at large or, indeed, without meaning. As already indicated, it extends to proceedings that are instituted for an improper purpose and it is clear that it extends to proceedings that are ‘seriously and unfairly burdensome, prejudicial or damaging’ or ‘productive of serious and unjustified trouble and harassment’.’”

  1. [120]
    Further, the Court adopted a general categorisation of the relevant abuse of process in this way:[39]

[15]   Earlier, in Rogers v The Queen, McHugh J observed:

‘Although the categories of abuse of procedure remain open, abuses of procedure usually fall into one of three categories: (1) the court’s procedures are invoked for an illegitimate purpose; (2) the use of the court’s procedures is unjustifiably oppressive to one of the parties; or (3) the use of the court’s procedures would bring the administration of justice into disrepute.’”

  1. [121]
    That the absence of a triable issue may be seen as an example of relevant abuse of process was made clear in Batistatos:[40]

[49] The course taken in the submissions to Hoeben J helps explain the path taken in the judgment of Bryson JA in the Court of Appeal. In truth, the absence of a triable issue, as well as the impossibility of the defendants obtaining a fair trial in the circumstances of the case, may be seen as instances of abuse of process and that term is not applicable solely to the latter situation. It will be recalled that, in the passages set out earlier in these reasons from the judgments of Gaudron J in Ridgeway v The Queen and McHugh J in Rogers v The Queen, the jurisdiction was described in terms sufficiently ample to encompass both situations.”

  1. [122]
    Furthermore, the Court held that contumelious disregard in the observance of important steps in the preparation of the case can amount to abuse of process:[41]

[67] What those ‘exceptional cases’ might include was not explored beyond the possible example given by Lord Diplock of Spring Grove Services Ltd v Deane, but it is apparent from other passages that ‘contumelious disregard’ by a plaintiff in observance of the more important steps in the preparation of the action for trial could enliven the exercise of the inherent power of the court. Such default was not relied on in Birkett v James itself. However, it is upon this footing that the present plaintiff points to a requirement of ‘oppressive conduct’, to its conceded absence in this case, and to consequent error in principle by the Court of Appeal.”

  1. [123]
    Finally, there is no requirement for oppressive conduct by the relevant party in the sense of moral delinquency, but, rather, the emphasis is upon the objective effect of the continuation of the action.[42]

Consideration

  1. [124]
    Consistently with the principles set out above, one of the relevant considerations in assessing the applications is whether the appeal has prospects of success. If the appeal is truly meritorious then the court may be reluctant to strike it out. Conversely, if the appeal has very poor prospects of success, or is demonstrably hopeless, the court may form the view that it is inherently unfair to vex the respondents further. In other words, the maintenance of a hopeless appeal can constitute relevant abuse of process to warrant the exercise of the court’s inherent power.
  1. [125]
    Further, the applicants submit the appeal is futile because the indictment has already been presented in the District Court, and even if the committal decision was set aside the indictment would still be operative in the same way that an ex officio indictment does not require a committal.
  1. [126]
    It is therefore necessary to make an assessment of the prospects of success on the current appeal, and whether the appeal is futile given that the indictment has been presented in the District Court.
  1. [127]
    The appellant attacked three decisions in his application for an order of judicial review under the JRA:
  1. (a)
    the decision to refuse to adjourn the hearing of his application for directions;
  2. (b)
    the decision to dismiss his application for directions; and
  3. (c)
    the decision to commit him for trial.
  1. [128]
    As to the first decision, in my view there are no prospects of success. In part that is because the decision of a magistrate to adjourn a hearing is not amenable to judicial review. In part it is because the appellant was not able to articulate any submission on this point before the learned primary judge.
  1. [129]
    In Director of Public Prosecutions v Tacey,[43] Spender J held that a decision of a magistrate to adjourn committal proceedings, made pursuant to s 84 of the Justices Act (Qld), was not open to judicial review under the Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act.
  1. [130]
    In the context of the JRA, in BB v Liebsanft & Ors,[44] Mackenzie J held:[45]

“In my view the making of an order, whether it be a protection order, a temporary protection order or some other order including an order that the proceedings be adjourned by a Magistrates Court is not a decision of an administrative character within the meaning of the Judicial Review Act…”

  1. [131]
    As the learned primary judge said:[46]

[62] In my view, the magistrate’s decision to refuse the Adjournment Application is not a decision to which the JRA applies and hence not amenable to judicial review under Part 3 of the JRA. It was not a decision resolving a substantive issue and it lacked the quality of finality. Further, it did not confer, alter or otherwise affect Mr Dupois’ legal rights or obligations.”

  1. [132]
    Further, as the learned primary judge found:[47]

[56] The QPS submits that Magistrate Previtera’s refusal of the Adjournment Application is not a decision of an ‘administrative character’ for the purposes of s 4. Although I raised this threshold issue with Mr Dupois at the hearing of the Review Application as a matter that he would need to address, Mr Dupois did not engage with the issue and did not make any contrary submissions of substance.”

  1. [133]
    There is no challenge to that finding on the appeal. The only grounds of appeal that touch on the adjournment issue are grounds 2c and 7, but they seek to argue the merits of the decision, not whether it was a decision of an “administrative character” for the purposes of s 4 of the JRA.
  1. [134]
    The second decision was to dismiss the application to cross-examine various witnesses at the committal.
  2. [135]
    The initial difficulty confronting the appellant is that the finding of the Magistrate was that the appellant could not articulate a reason to cross-examine any witness beyond challenging credibility.
  3. [136]
    As reflected in the reasons below, the Magistrate made findings of fact as to what happened:[48]
  1. “[111]
    As the magistrate identified in her reasons for refusing the Cross-Examination Application, the broad reason given byMr Dupois to justify directions for cross-examination was simply to challenge the credibility of the prosecution witnesses, without specific reference to any inconsistencies within or between their statements.
  2. [112]
    The magistrate concluded this alone did not amount to ‘substantial reasons’ sufficient to grant the application. The magistrate considered such issues of credit were trial issues and not matters   that   would   justify   cross-examination   during a committal proceeding.
  3. [113]
    The magistrate concluded:

‘The prosecution has set out with a particularity the reasons why they object to the witnesses being cross- examined. This court accepts those submissions that have been made, and in relation to all the witnesses, the court is satisfied that the defendant has made no attempt to permissibly or tangibly engage with the case presented by the witness in their statement. He has not submitted on any inconsistencies within witness statements or between witness statements, or between the statement of one witness and the statement of another witness.

He has failed to provide any scope or definitive lines of questioning of witnesses that identify with sufficient particularity such that would satisfy the court that the cross-examination is necessary and has a definite aim or will narrow the issues in dispute. The only aim that the defendant has identified is that the witnesses are without credit and that all of the evidence is fabricated for the reasons that he gives.

As a result, the court accepts that the defendant’s reasons are no more than a fishing expedition or a dress-rehearsal for any trial...

...

Now, evidence simply to disprove the charges doesn’t form part of the prosecution brief. That evidence is properly put before a trial court if the defendant is committed for trial. In so far as the broad reason for cross- examination is simply to challenge the credibility of witnesses without reference to parts of their evidence as relates to inconsistencies within their statements or as against other statements, issues of credibility are to be determined at any trial rather than at a committal proceeding.’”

  1. [137]
    The learned primary judge made findings as to this issue:[49]
  1. “[115]
    The magistrate’s refusal of the Cross-Examination Application in no way amounts to an ‘abuse of process’. The magistrate was simply not satisfied that Mr Dupois’ application satisfied the statutory requirements for the giving of directions under s 83A(5AA). That decision was clearly open to the magistrate and cannot be said to be legally unreasonable. The magistrate considered the Cross-Examination Application in accordance with the law. Her decision to refuse the application is unimpeachable.
  2. [116]
    Mr Dupois did not have an absolute right to cross-examine any of the witnesses. Any such right would only arise if he first persuaded the magistrate that there were substantial reasons why it was in the interests of justice to allow him to do so. He failed to do so.
  3. [117]
    I am not satisfied Mr Dupois has demonstrated any basis for a statutory order of review in respect of the magistrate’s decision to dismiss the Cross-Examination Application.”
  1. [138]
    The learned primary judge’s conclusion amounted to a concurrent finding of fact, namely that the appellant had not been able to articulate any basis for cross- examination beyond seeking to challenge credibility.  As his Honour put it:[50]

“… the broad reason given by Mr Dupois to justify directions for cross-examination was simply to challenge the credibility of the prosecution witnesses, without specific reference to any inconsistencies within or between their statements.”

  1. [139]
    Even now the appellant does not identify any basis for cross-examination beyond that raised before the Magistrate and the learned primary judge. It was not sufficient then to establish that the Magistrate’s decision was legally unreasonable, and it is not sufficient to do so now.
  1. [140]
    In my view, the prospects of success on this point are non-existent.
  2. [141]
    The third decision attacked is that the Magistrate should not have committed the appellant for trial. This encompasses two points. The first is that the Magistrate should not have accepted or relied on statements tendered by the QPS. The second is that the Magistrate should not have accepted them as a basis for committal.
  3. [142]
    The first point may be shortly dealt with. As the learned primary judge pointed out:[51]
  1. “[119]
    I reject that submission. Mr Dupois’ complaint is fundamentally misconceived. His argument with respect to ‘hearsay’ ignores or fails to comprehend the express statutory provisions of the Justices Act.
  2. [120]
    Section 110A(3) of the Justices Act not only permitted, but required the magistrate to admit the prosecution’s witness statements as evidence if she was satisfied under s 110A(4) that Mr Dupois:
  1. (a)
    understood what the proceeding was about and the possible consequences for him arising out of the proceeding;
  2. (b)
    was aware he was entitled to be legally represented and may apply for legal assistance;
  3. (c)
    had been made aware he has a right to apply, under s 83A(5AA), for directions allowing him to cross- examine witnesses; and
  4. (d)
    had been given an explanation of the requirements that applied for making a s 83A(5AA) application.
  1. [121]
    Mr Dupois asserted that these four requirements had not been met, however, he was unable to articulate any clear basis for his submission. Instead, he wrongly argued that s 110A(4) meant that, because he was self-represented, the magistrate could not admit the statements as evidence unless he agreed to her doing so.
  2. [122]
    The magistrate was satisfied that the requirements of s 110A(4) had been met. It was open to her to be satisfied of those matters in all the circumstances.”
  1. [143]
    Section 110A relevantly provides:

110A Use of tendered statements in lieu of oral testimony in committal proceedings

  1. (1)
    This section applies if justices are conducting a proceeding with a view to determining whether a defendant should be committed for trial or sentence for an indictable offence.

  1. (2)
    If a written statement of a witness is tendered to them by the defence, the justices may, subject to the provisions of this section being satisfied, admit the statement as evidence without the witness appearing before them to give evidence or make a statement.
  2. (3)
    If a written statement of a witness is tendered to them by the prosecution, the justices—
  1. (a)
    must, subject to the provisions of this section being satisfied, admit the statement as evidence; and
  2. (b)
    must not require the witness to appear before them to give evidence or make a statement unless the witness is required to   be   called   by   the   prosecution   because a direction has been issued under section 83A(5AA).
  1. (4)
    However, if the defendant is not represented by a lawyer, subsection (3) does not apply unless the justices are satisfied that all of the following are true—
  1. (a)
    the defendant understands what the proceeding is about and the possible consequences for the defendant arising out of the proceeding;
  2. (b)
    the defendant is aware that the defendant—
  1. (i)
    is entitled to be legally represented; and
  2. (ii)
    may apply for legal assistance;
  1. (c)
    the defendant has been made aware that the defendant has a right to apply for a direction under section 83A(5AA) that the witness attend the proceeding to give oral evidence;
  2. (d)
    the defendant has been given an explanation of the requirements that apply under this division for making an application as mentioned in paragraph (c).”
  1. [144]
    The learned primary judge held:[52]
  1. “[124]
    The magistrate correctly admitted the witness statements as evidence in accordance with s 110A(3) of the Justices Act. The contents of those statements were not inadmissible hearsay evidence. On the contrary, they constituted the evidence that the magistrate was bound to consider in discharging her functions under ss 104 and 108 of the Justices Act to determine whether the evidence adduced was sufficient to put the defendant upon trial for any indictable offence.”
  1. [145]
    In my view, that finding was plainly correct. For present purposes the critical part was his Honour’s finding that: “The contents of those statements … constituted the evidence that the Magistrate was bound to consider in discharging her functions.” That is a finding of fact which cannot be rationally challenged.
  1. [146]
    On the second point, the learned primary judge read the statements tendered at the committal. His Honour referred to the appellant’s contention that he had been unreasonably committed, and said:[53]
  1. “[134]
    I do not consider that has been demonstrated in this case. On the contrary, I consider the magistrate’s decision   to commit Mr Dupois for trial was the only reasonable decision that could have been made in the circumstances. I have read and considered the written statements tendered by the prosecution. In my opinion, they contain sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie case in respect of each indictable offence with which Mr Dupois has been charged and in respect of which he has been committed for trial. The magistrate’s opinion as to the sufficiency of the evidence was an evaluative judgment that was supported by the evidence adduced by the prosecution. The decision to commit Mr Dupois for trial cannot be said to be legally unreasonable.”
  1. [147]
    There are, therefore, concurrent findings that the appellant should have been committed for trial.
  1. [148]
    Those findings are the product of evaluative judgments on the part of the Magistrate and the learned primary judge. His Honour found as much in paragraph [134] of the reasons below:

“The magistrate’s opinion as to the sufficiency of the evidence was an evaluative judgment that was supported by the evidence adduced by the prosecution.”

  1. [149]
    As the learned primary judge correctly said, the committal process is not a trial and the Magistrate’s task in assessing the evidence is an attenuated one:[54]
  1. “[176]
    A committal hearing is not a trial. A magistrate performing the administrative function of assessing the sufficiency of the evidence adduced does not make any finding with respect to a defendant’s guilt or innocence. In assessing the sufficiency of the evidence, the magistrate simply considers whether, in effect, there is a prima facie case to answer. The magistrate must consider whether, on the strength of the evidence adduced, a reasonable jury, properly instructed, could convict the defendant of the charges. The test is not a demanding one. If there is any evidence capable of meeting that threshold, irrespective of whether it is tenuous, weak or inherently vague, it is open to the magistrate to be satisfied that there is sufficient evidence to commit the defendant for trial. In making that assessment, a magistrate must, of course, have regard to credibility issues and evidence that is contrary to, or tends to undermine, the prosecution’s evidence. But the magistrate is not the arbiter of fact and does not decide whether to accept or reject the evidence of any witness. That is the function of the jury upon the defendant’s trial of the charges.”
  1. [150]
    In my view, the characterisation of those findings as evaluative judgments is undoubtedly correct. They were decisions involving a discretion as to value judgments concerning the sufficiency of the statements. But that also means they are findings of fact, and the test for whether they are sustainable is whether the findings were open on the evidence.
  1. [151]
    The rules governing when a court will upset a discretionary decision were settled in House v The King.[55] The accused brought a general appeal (then) as of right under s 73 of the Constitution (ie an appeal strictly so called), against a sentence of imprisonment for a bankruptcy offence. The joint judgment[56] treated sentencing as involving the exercise of a “judicial discretion” and held that:

“It is not enough that the judges composing the appellate court consider that, if they had been in the position of the primary judge, they would have taken a different course. It must appear that some error has been made in exercising the discretion. If the judge acts upon a wrong principle, if he allows extraneous or irrelevant matters to guide or affect him, if he mistakes the facts, if he does not take into account some material consideration, then his determination should be reviewed ... It may not appear how the primary judge has reached the result embodied in his order, but, if upon the facts it is unreasonable or plainly unjust, the appellate court may infer that in some way there has been a failure properly to exercise the discretion which the law reposes in the court of first instance.”

  1. [152]
    None of those matters have been demonstrated here. There is no apparent application of wrong principle, the learned primary judge did not allow extraneous or irrelevant matters to guide or affect him, his Honour did not mistake the facts, nor did his Honour fail to take into account some material consideration. It cannot rationally be said that the outcome was unreasonable or plainly unjust.
  1. [153]
    The appellant’s repetitious invocations of corruption do not advance his case. Rather, they serve to obscure the fact that there is simply no evidence to support the assertions. On two separate hearings the appellant has been told by judges who have seen and listened to the appellant’s “evidence” of corruption, that there is no admissible evidence to support such serious allegations.[57] Findings to that effect have been made in those decisions, rejecting the assertions. Yet the appellant persists, adding each new judge to the ever-lengthening list of so-called corrupt judges.
  1. [154]
    I respectfully adopt what the learned primary judge said in this case, as aptly describing the appellant’s submissions attempting to “prove” the corruption he asserts, without substance:[58]
  1. “[71]
    He contends that each of the three decisions made by the magistrate were predetermined and are the result of corruption and collusion to unlawfully commit him to stand trial and to deny him his legal rights. He claims that the magistrate acted on the instructions of other members of the judiciary and demonstrated bias in favour of the prosecution, rather than bringing an independent and impartial mind to the proceedings.
  2. [72]
    Mr Dupois makes serious and significant allegations of malice, impropriety and criminality. In the absence of proof, the allegations he makes are scandalous. Given the nature and gravity of the allegations, cogent, persuasive evidence would be required to substantiate these claims.
  3. [73]
    Mr Dupois was entirely unable to provide any such evidence at the hearing of the Review Application.
  4. [74]
    When I raised these matters with Mr Dupois and asked him to identify the evidence he relied upon, he resorted to dissembling submissions, rambling protestations of his alleged innocence and repeated complaints about the supposed ‘hearsay’ nature of the witness statements relied on by the prosecution. When I further pressed Mr Dupois for proof, he remained unable to point to any passages in the transcript of the proceedings before Magistrate Previtera or any other admissible evidence to support his claims.
  5. [75]
    On the contrary, the ‘evidence’ Mr Dupois claims supports his allegations are the contents of a previous affidavit he swore on 22 November 2022 for the purposes of an earlier proceeding in this Court, which was again relied upon by him in support of his Review Application. The affidavit contains a series of outrageous assertions and baseless accusations, founded upon nothing more than inadmissible opinion and hearsay evidence, underpinned by Mr Dupois’ subjective perceptions of injustice.”
  1. [155]
    Absent the appellant’s contention that the charges were corruptly conceived and prosecuted, as to which there is much assertion but no real evidence, no contention was advanced that the material otherwise was insufficient to warrant committal.
  1. [156]
    That has an obvious impact on the appeal, in so far as it seeks orders that the decision to commit the appellant for trial be set aside and the committal proceedings be reheard. In the face of the concurrent findings that the material was sufficient to commit for trial, the chances of success on this point are of a romancing nature rather than realistic.
  1. [157]
    As the learned primary judge found:[59]

“ … I am satisfied the magistrate did consider the sufficiency of the evidence adduced and was satisfied that it was sufficient to put Mr Dupois on his trial for the indictable offences with which he is charged. In my opinion, the evidence adduced in the prosecution case was capable of establishing a prima facie case. There would therefore be no utility in making orders that would require the process to be undertaken again. As things presently stand, the same result would inevitably follow.”

  1. [158]
    There is an additional hurdle confronting the appellant on the whole of the appeal.  It is that the learned primary judge would have refused relief even if reviewable error had been demonstrated. His Honour held:[60]
  1. “[181]
    In my view, this is not an exceptional case and there are no special reasons that would warrant interference in the course of the criminal proceedings. Therefore, even if Mr Dupois was successful in establishing any grounds of review, I would nevertheless decline to grant the relief sought by the Review Application on discretionary grounds.”
  1. [159]
    His Honour’s conclusion in that respect was based on an acceptance of well- established authority:[61]
  1. “[178]
    As to the second factor, in Sankey v Whitlam, Gibbs ACJ, when considering whether declaratory relief ought to be granted in respect of a defendant in a committal proceeding, stated:

Once criminal proceedings have begun they should be allowed to follow their ordinary course unless it appears that for some special reason it is necessary in the interests of justice to make a declaratory order.

  1. [179]
    Pertinent to the present context are the observations of Holmes CJ in Mosquera v Coates, where her Honour stated:

In any event, even were there a basis to quash the committal order, discretionary considerations would militate against that course. Courts are reluctant in the exercise of supervisory jurisdiction to interfere in the administration of the criminal law; fragmentation of the criminal process is plainly undesirable…”

  1. [160]
    The significance of his Honour’s finding cannot be understated. Even if the appellant had succeeded in showing error on the part of the Magistrate his Honour would have refused relief on discretionary grounds.
  1. [161]
    Any challenge to that finding would have to meet the tests in House v The King and persuade this court that his Honour’s conclusion was not open. In my view, the appellant cannot do so. First, the finding was based on an assumption that error had been demonstrated on the part of the Magistrate. Secondly, the assumption also was that the demonstrated error was such as to entitle the appellant to relief. There is therefore no leverage left for the appellant in respect of the Magistrate’s approach or decisions.
  1. [162]
    Thirdly, the conclusion was based on well-established authority. It cannot be said that there was an error of principle, or a misapplication of the law.
  1. [163]
    Fourthly, and most importantly, the factual underpinning of the conclusion was that the learned primary judge had read the statements tendered at the committal and made his own independent finding that there was sufficient evidence to put the appellant on trial.
  1. [164]
    Given those matters, error of the kind in House v The King cannot be made out.
  1. [165]
    In my view, the appellant’s prospects of success in this appeal are non-existent. It is bound to fail.  That appeal therefore lacks utility.
  2. [166]
    Further, as I observed earlier, the applicants have invoked the inherent jurisdiction of the court as a basis upon which the appeal ought to be dismissed.
  3. [167]
    For the reasons set out above, the appeal has no prospects and the respondents to it should not be vexed further by the appellant’s obstinate, misguided and defiant refusal to articulate a proper case or comply with the court’s directions as to the minimum required to assist the court or afford a fair hearing. The appellant’s conduct meets the description in Batistatos, namely contumelious disregard in the observance of important steps in the preparation of the case: see paragraph [122] above.
  4. [168]
    The appeal should be dismissed.

Conclusion and orders

  1. [169]
    For the reasons expressed above both applications should succeed. I have given consideration to whether the appeals should be struck out or dismissed. In my view, there are good reasons to take the latter course rather than let the appeals limp on. They include: (i) the serious defects in the formulation of the grounds; (ii) the refusal of the appellant to properly particularise or articulate his case (iii) the appellant’s contumelious conduct in refusing to comply with the court’s directions as to the preparation of the appeals; (iv) the unconscionable delay when seen in light of the refusal to prepare the cases; and (v) the outrageous nature of the allegations of corruption.
  2. [170]
    As to the last point, it will be evident from the forgoing reasons that the appellant has an entrenched method of accusatorial advocacy which consists of characterising every adverse result as being the product of corruption on the part of judicial officers. The appellant has not shown that there is any basis for those allegations.
  3. [171]
    Recently this Court referred to a similar approach taken by a self-represented litigant, in Karamaroudis v Queensland Police Service & Ors.[62]What was there said is apt in the present case:[63]
  1. “[13]
    There is another matter we should mention at the outset. These reasons are longer than they otherwise might have been because the Court has had to deal with the appellant’s repeated assertions that the Magistrates who have handled his hearings, and the learned primary judge, are guilty of bias (both actual and apprehended), unfair conduct by the denial of procedural fairness, fraud, and corrupt conduct, by concealing corrupt practices of the police officers involved in the appellant’s arrest and the conduct of the prosecution of the committal, and, in the case of the learned primary judge, concealing corrupt practices by the Magistrates.
  2. [14]
    As will appear, there is simply no evidential foundation for those wild and outrageous assertions. They emanate from the appellant’s dogged but wholly erroneous view of the various hearings in the Magistrate’s Court, perceiving every adverse ruling or denial of his desire to loudly denounce what he sees as corrupt or unfair conduct, as being grounded in corruption of some kind or other. Even in the course of submissions before this Court the appellant demonstrated an inability to comes to grips with the undeniable defects in his analysis of events.
  3. [15]
    Leaving aside for the moment the appellant’s general complaint that he was wrongly charged, a matter that will be tested in the committal and trial (if any), the foundation of his complaints against the police stem from the discrepancy between what was sworn by one officer in an affidavit for a bail hearing (as to his agitated demeanour when arrested and in the watch house), and what is revealed by the relevant CCTV footage.
  4. [16]
    The prosecutor accepts that there is a discrepancy, and the CCTV footage can be said to not show the degree of agitation referred to in the affidavit. But that does not mean the particular officer was corrupt, as the appellant would have it. The difference may lie in one person’s perception as to events, that not being borne out by other facts. It is a common occurrence in court cases of all kinds that there is a variance in recollection. It does not equate to corruption. Nor does it mean that every officer who has handled the case since that time is corrupt.
  5. [17]
    By doggedly adhering to a view of events which is simply wrong, and using that as a platform for making unjustified and outrageous allegations of judicial corruption, the appellant abuses his right to address the courts.”
  1. [172]
    The appellant’s approach is similar and equally flawed. The baseless assertions of judicial corruption consequent upon any reversal in court do not serve to advance the appellant’s cause, but rather obscure it.
  2. [173]
    In my view, the appeals must be dismissed. There is no reason why costs should not follow the event.
  3. [174]
    The orders are:
  1. 1.Appeal 4348 of 2023 is dismissed with costs.
  2. 2.Appeal 5226 of 2023 is dismissed with costs.

Footnotes

[1] To whom I shall refer as ‘the appellant’.

[2] The indictment was on two counts. One is unlawful stalking (a domestic violence offence), and the other, assault occasioning bodily harm (a domestic violence offence).

[3] No 6119 of 2022.

[4] Transcript of reasons T 1-2 lines 5-13.

[5] Emphasis in original text.

[6] Dupois v Magistrate Previtera & Anor [2023] QSC 82.

[7] As his Honour explained that this was because Mr Dupois confirmed that it sought identical relief: Reasons below [6].

[8] Reasons below [64]-[68].

[9] Reasons below [167].

[10] Reasons below [169]-[181].

[11] Emphasis in original text.

[12] [2021] QCA 62.

[13] [1980] VR 26.

[14] [2021] QCA 62 at [39]. Footnotes omitted.

[15] Young v Gold Coast City Council [2015] QCA 45.

[16] Thompson v Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Rescue (Qld) Inc & Anor [2022] QCA 149.

[17] Colston v Mullen [2011] QCA 2.

[18] [2023] QCA 21 at [18].

[19] Quinlan v ERM Power Ltd & Ors [2021] QSC 35 at [62]-[63]; FTV Holdings Cairns Pty Ltd v Smith [2014] QCA 217 at [62].

[20] Emphasis in original text.

[21] Emphasis in original text.

[22] Transcript 29 August 2023, T1-13 to 1-17.

[23] C2C Investments Pty Ltd v Leigh (No. 3) [2012] FCA 680 at [6]; Gunnarsson-Weiner v Iles [2020] TASFC 1 at [28]; Crocker v Toys ‘R’ Us (Australia) Pty Ltd (No. 3) [2015] FCA 728 at [9]; Grahame v Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Limited [2021] VSCA 222 at [116].

[24] Emphasis added.

[25] That is, her Honour did not use that power ‘purely for the purposes to protect and cover up unlawful police and judicial officers.’

[26] Emphasis in the original text.

[27] Counsel for the second respondents.

[28] Emphasis in the original text.

[29] Attached to the Notice of Appeal in 4348/23.

[30] Magistrate Strofield.

[31] Outline paragraph 4. Footnotes omitted.

[32] Appellant‘s outline filed 18 December 2023, paragraph 4.

[33] (2006) 226 CLR 256, [2006] HCA 27, [6]. Footnotes omitted.

[34] [1982] AC 529 at 536.

[35] Batistatos [9].

[36] Batistatos [10]. Footnotes omitted; emphasis added.

[37] Ridgeway v The Queen (1994) 184 CLR 19 at 74-75, [1995] HCA 66.

[38] Batistatos [14]. Footnotes omitted; emphasis added.

[39] Batistatos [15]. Footnote omitted.

[40] Batistatos [49]. Footnotes omitted.

[41] Batistatos [67]. Footnotes omitted; emphasis added.

[42] Batistatos [69]-[70].

[43] Federal Court of Australia, Spender J, 15 April 1993, pp 7-8.

[44] [2003] QSC 326.

[45] Liebsanft [17]. Emphasis added.

[46] Reasons below [62].

[47] Reasons below [56].

[48] Reasons below [111]-[113].

[49] Reasons below [115]-[117].

[50] Reasons below [111].

[51] Reasons below [119]-[122].

[52] Reasons below [124].

[53] Reasons below [134].

[54] Reasons below [176].

[55] (1936) 55 CLR 499, [1936] HCA 40.

[56] Dixon, Evatt and McTiernan JJ.

[57] Bowskill CJ in Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor [2022] QSC 241, [19]-[21], and Morrison JA in Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor [2022] QCA 240, [33]-[35]. The former decision, [2022] QSC 241, is subject to appeal, but the latter decision is not the subject of appeal.

[58] Reasons below [71]-[75]. Footnote omitted.

[59] Reasons below [173].

[60] Reasons below [181].

[61] Reasons below [178]-[180]. Footnotes omitted. The cases referred to are Sankey v Whitlam (1978) 142 CLR 1, at 26; and Mosquera v Coates [2017] QSC 134 at [33].

[62] [2023] QCA 217.

[63] Karamaroudis [13]-[17].

Close

Editorial Notes

  • Published Case Name:

    Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor; Dupois v Magistrate Previtera & Anor

  • Shortened Case Name:

    Dupois v Queensland Police & Anor; Dupois v Magistrate Previtera & Anor

  • MNC:

    [2024] QCA 13

  • Court:

    QCA

  • Judge(s):

    Morrison JA

  • Date:

    12 Feb 2024

Litigation History

EventCitation or FileDateNotes
Primary JudgmentSC6119/22 (No citation)27 Mar 2023Originating application seeking relief in respect of criminal proceedings then pending in Magistrates Court; application for stay of trial of matter refused; proceedings dismissed: Brown J.
Primary Judgment[2023] QSC 8228 Apr 2023Applications for judicial review in respect of decisions in Magistrates Court refusing to adjourn hearing of application for directions, dismissing application for directions, and committing applicant for trial; applications dismissed: Crowley J.
Appeal Determined (QCA)[2024] QCA 1312 Feb 2024Appeals dismissed: Morrison JA.

Appeal Status

Appeal Determined (QCA)

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